Murray, the first overall pick in April’s draft, threw for 173 yards on 30 completions, setting an NFL record for the fewest passing yards by a quarterback with at least 30 completions in the Super Bowl era, according to ESPN Stats & Information. The previous record was held by Nathan Peterman, who threw for 188 yards on 31 completions in 2018.
“We just did what we had to do today, as far as me just taking what they were giving me,” Murray said after the 38-20 loss.
The Cardinals knew heading into Sunday’s game that it would be tough to throw behind the Panthers’ secondary; the plan was to keep the passing game short. Of Murray’s 43 attempts, only seven were thrown longer than 10 yards. Only one was completed.
“We had a couple deep shots,” coach Kliff Kingsbury said. “They were there. We didn’t make the plays, unfortunately. But I think they had a plan and wanted to keep things in front of them and did a good job. We ended up making errors and they had a bunch of [tackles for loss] that put us in third-and-long situations that were hard to overcome.”
Murray started the game 6-for-7 for 27 yards as the Cardinals marched 74 yards for a touchdown as the Panthers’ plan to keep the Cardinals’ offense in front of them worked.
“You saw what we did [in] the first half, it was all there,” Murray said. “It was easy even though they were not letting us get behind them, we did whatever we wanted to, pretty much. Complimentary football, we have to be better at it.”
Murray was 12-for-14 for 42 yards and a touchdown on throws behind the line of scrimmage and 17-for-21 for 108 yards on throws from the line of scrimmage to 10 yards, according to NFL Next Gen Stats.
“They weren’t really letting anything behind them and they’ve shown that on film,” wide receiver Christian Kirk said. “So we knew we kind of had to kind of dink-and-dunk and get our run game going if we were going to be successful.”